Can someone confirm this wikipaedia fact is indeed true?
"World's Hovercraft Speed Record - September 18, 1995 - Speed Trials, Bob Windt (USA) 137.4 km/h (85.87 mph), 34.06 secs measured kilometre"
I wonder if/when it will be broken?
Does it have to be done at a sanctioned Hovercraft event, or could it be done using independent timekeepers?
(No I'm not considering the Bonneville salt flats!)
Funny you should mention the salt flats. I was involved in putting together the WHF regs for the speed record in preparation for the WHC in Terre Haute. At that time I went through significant effort to obtain a timing setup from . . . . . Bonneville! In fact, they shipped their set up to Terre Haute. However, the local organisers didn't put it to use!! During my negotiations for the equipment, I was offered an invitation to bring hovercraft to Bonneville to establish a new record.
To get back to your question, I had discussions with the Guiness people and they said they would acknowledge records when set under the guidance of a recognised body. This is what led to the writing of the speed regulations (with a lot of help from the Bonneville people!) for the WHF.
They're on the WHF web site (www.world-hovercraft-federation.org) in the download section.
Tall 4999 said:
"Can someone confirm this wikipaedia fact is indeed true?" - I thought you had to take Wikipedia information with a pinch of salt.
There is a link at the bottom of the Wikipedia page to the HCGB site but it is no longer working!
Growing old is compulsory -
Growing up is optional!
I can confirm that Bob Windt's run in Portugal was the fastest speed ever recorded by an official organisation. In this case, the WHF. I was one of the timing officials during the test.
However, I also know that the very next day I was aboard with 4 others on that craft running down the river at very high speed to attend a luncheon. There was a road paralleling the river and several Brits raced along trying to keep up. One of them later informed me that we left them behind even though they were travelling at over 100 mph! Bob explained to me that this was highly probable given the extra ballast to keep us from blowing over. It was quite an exhilarating ride!
One other thing: I've heard that the SRN4's attained a higher speed during cross-channel operations but I've never had this confirmed (and it was never verified by an 'official' organisation). I've also read that an American experimental sidewall hovercraft, powered by water-jets exceeded 100-mph - also never confirmed.